What is it?
MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) of the chest does not use X-ray radiation. It instead uses a powerful magnetic system to make images of the chest and chest tissue area, also called the thoracic area. It can create dozens or sometimes hundreds of images in a short time.
What is it for?
A chest MRI can identify and check growths, masses, lymph nodes, blood vessels, cancerous tissue, blood flow and interpret results from other tests.
- An alternative to imaging procedures that utilize radiation
- Evaluate blood flow
- Detect tumors
- Show chest structure from a variety of views and angles
How to prepare
- You will be given instructions are what to eat or drink prior to the procedure
- Talk to your health care provider about your medical history, current medical condition, medicines you are taking and any allergies you have
- You will be asked if you have any implanted medical devices. Implanted medical devices can malfunction or cause problems during an MRI.
- An allergic reaction may occur from the use of a contrast material (dye)
- The strong magnetic fields can cause pacemakers and other implants to malfunction
- Metal inside your body may be moved or shifted slightly because of the magnetic fields
- An MRI is not recommended if you are pregnant, as it can cause a harmful increase in the temperature of the amniotic fluid
What happens during?
- You may be given a sedative to help you relax
- You will lie on a moveable table which slides into the scanner
- It’s important that you are still since movement affects image quality
- Contrast material may be used. It is injected in your hand or arm by I.V. The contrast material helps to clearly seeing specific areas.
- You will be in a separate room from the MRI technologist but you will be watched and in constant communication with the technologist
- The scan takes between 30 to 60 minutes but may go longer
What happens after?
- There is no recovery time unless you were given a sedative to relax
- You can resume your regular diet and activities following the MRI